Mayer was hired in July of 2012. Her original contract with Yahoo, considered a negotiating success for the former Google executive, was worth a total of $365 million over five years, according to Business Insider. Around the time of her hiring, Yahoo was the number one listed web property. The tech conglomerate, in other words, was once one of the most-frequented sites on the Internet.
Even though use of Internet has exponentially grown, the company has been hemorrhaging money and losing its market share of Internet users.
It was reported in February that Yahoo had to lay off around 15 percent of its workforce to compensate for enormous losses. Soon after, on a conference call with investors, Mayer explained that “Yahoo cannot win the hearts and minds of users and advertisers with a complicated portfolio of products and assets.” David Goldman of CNN described the employment termination as a “new strategy” to “make Yahoo leaner and more profitable.” It was reported by many other news outlets at the time that this was most likely an inevitable precursor to a full-scale acquisition.
Many people saw these losses and Mayer’s attempts to spin the truth as a glaring sign that Yahoo’s livelihood was suffering and Mayer’s leadership was not going well. Eric Jackson, a fund manager for SpringOwl, created a 99-page presentation at the end of 2015 advising Yahoo to fire Mayer. Jackson, according to Business Insider, said his plan garnered support from shareholders.
Reports Monday contend the news of Verizon’s purchase of Yahoo exemplifies Mayer’s inability to right the deviating ship, with some calling her reign a failure. Yahoo, though, was considered by some to be struggling prior to her arrival.
Mayer has also been criticized on a number of occasions for spending money on frivolous things rather than the development of the company. Mayer organized and hosted a party with a $7 million price tag in San Francisco. The event was “Great Gatsby”-themed, an inherently ironic motif since the novel featured excessively extravagant soirees and uninhibited spending.
In her own original statement, Mayer expressed that “This is a good moment to reflect on Yahoo’s journey to date.”
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